Michael Coates

Former CISO at Twitter and Former Head of Security at Mozilla

Michael Coates
  • Led IT security at Twitter, securing systems and the data of the network’s roughly 300 million users
  • Also served as head of security at Mozilla, protecting half a billion Firefox users, web applications, and infrastructure
  • Draws on first-hand experience to shed light on the true threats that exist, and how to fight back

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Michael Coates has worked in the information security space for the past 15 years, leading security at global organizations such as Twitter and Mozilla and protecting hundreds of millions of people worldwide.

Currently the CEO and co-founder of Altitude Networks, Michael was previously the Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) at Twitter. There, his team worked to protect nearly 300 million users, securing both Twitter systems and user data. Exclusively represented by Leading Authorities speakers bureau, Coates draws on his first-hand experience securing some of the world’s most complex networks to bring to light the threats that exist and provide a roadmap for securing the future of technology.

Before serving as CISO at Twitter, Michael was the Director of Product Security at Shape Security. In this role, he worked with a specialized team to drastically change the way organizations defend their applications against modern application attacks. Prior to that, Michael was head of security for Mozilla. There, he built and led the security assurance program to protect nearly half a billion Firefox users, Mozilla web applications, and infrastructure.

Michael has also served on the global board of directors for OWASP, the largest non-profit application organization in the world. Michael was a member of the board for six years, three of those years as the chairman. 

Altitude Networks, the cyber security company he recently founded, was named a “Top 30 Cyber Security Startup in 2019” by Business Insider.

Before building and leading security programs, Michael assessed, compromised, and secured applications and networks for some of the largest banks, governments, and enterprises around the world. Michael has served as an advisor to multiple start-ups and was also honored in 2012 when he was selected as an SC Magazine Influential Security Mind.

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(in)Security Is Eating The World: How To Build A Security Program That Succeeds.
Technology has transformed nearly every segment of our lives and will continue to dramatically impact the future. From transportation, to medicine, to communication, technology underpins every aspect of how we interact with the world, and with each other. However, every day we see examples of critical security failures impacting technology, and ultimately our lives. The fundamentals of security may be simple, but the implementation is far from it. There is a massive interconnection of technologies, an explosion of data, time to market drivers, and human interpretation is mixed throughout. The solution to this chaos is not to employ more humans toiling for security. Automate or die. The future of security is a dramatic shift to autonomy, scale, and speed. Join Michael as you journey through a talk of controversial stances and hard realities to uncover a strategy for securing the future of technology.

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